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KERA Think Rundown – Week of 9/17/12

General, KERA Radio, News Releases 60

Think airs Monday to Thursday from 12:00 noon to 2:00 p.m. on KERA 90.1 FM. Encore airings of Think can be heard Monday to Thursday nights on KERA FM beginning at 9:00 p.m. Podcasts and streamed video are available online at

Monday, 9/17

Hour 1:  There’s no doubt that the world changed forever in the 18 months immediately following the 9/11 attacks in 2001. We’ll unravel the webs of deception and post-attack covert political actions this hour with veteran journalist and Vanity Fair contributing editor Kurt Eichenwald. He’ll also discuss his new book “500 Days: Secrets and Lies in the Terror Wars” (Touchstone, 2012) this week at the World Affairs Council of Dallas Fort Worth.

Hour 2:  How did the devastating casualty rates of the U.S. Civil War affect Americans’ perception of death and what did this unprecedented loss of population change the country? We’ll talk this hour with documentary filmmaker Ric Burns, whose new film “Death and the Civil War” will premier on PBS’ American Experience tomorrow – Tuesday, September 18th.

Tuesday, 9/18

Hour 1:  What is life like for Africa’s small farmers – many of whom are women and most of whom struggle to even feed their families year-round? We’ll spend this hour with Roger Thurow, senior fellow for Global Agriculture and Food Policy at the Chicago Council on Global Affairs and author of the new book “The Last Hunger Season: A Year in an African Farm Community on the Brink of Change” (PublicAffairs, 2012).

Hour 2:  Can political progress still be possible in our country at a time when gridlock and extreme partisanship seem to be the norm? We’ll discuss the possibilities of cooperation – political and otherwise – across networks this hour with innovation expert Steven Johnson. His new book is “Future Perfect: The Case For Progress In A Networked Age” (Riverhead, 2012).

Wednesday, 9/19

Hour 1:  How important is slang to the development of a language and the society it serves? We’ll look beyond the dictionary definition this hour with American Speech editor Michael Adams, author of “Slang: The People’s Poetry” (Oxford University Press, 2012) which is now out in paperback.

Hour 2:  What is required to maintain sanity and self-control while incarcerated for a crime you insist you didn’t commit? We’ll talk this hour with Damien Echols, who spent nearly two decades on death row for a wrongful murder conviction. He writes about his experience in the new memoir “Life After Death” (Blue Rider Press, 2012).

Thursday, 9/20

Hour 1:  What happens to children born into the poorest communities of America once they come of age? We’ll find out this hour with National Book Award-winner Jonathan Kozol, who has followed the issue first as a teacher and then as a writer – for nearly five decades. His new book is “Fire in the Ashes: Twenty-Five Years Among the Poorest Children in America” (Crown, 2012).

Hour 2:  What new rules are in play for the 2012 election campaigns? We’ll delve into the statistics, strategies, and psychology of winning this hour with Sasha Issenberg, Slate columnist and Washington correspondent for Monocle. His new book is “The Victory Lab: The Secret Science of Winning Campaigns” (Crown, 2012).